Whether your deck gets year-round use or is simply a seasonal luxury for you and your family, it ages just like the rest of your home.
Here are some of the warning signs that your deck is nearing or has reached the end of its life:
- Soft Joists
Joists are what help hold your deck up, and if you can push a screwdriver into the wood or can physically feel that the wood is soft, this is a good sign the stability of your deck has been compromised. Joists can become soft and damaged due to age, pests, and water damage.
- Rotted or Water-Damaged Posts
Modern decks are commonly built with concrete footings a few inches above the ground and include a bracket that keeps the post’s base dry. Older decks, however, have posts that rest on footings that are at ground-level, which makes them highly susceptible to water damage and rot.
- Unsecured Ledger Boards
One of the most vital components of your deck, the ledger boards hold up the part of your deck that is secured to your house. Boards that show deterioration are already in danger of causing your deck to detach from your house.
- Wobbly Railings
Although loose railings alone won’t cause your deck to collapse, they are still a big safety hazard, especially if you have young children or aging family members. You can try to secure loose railings with nails on your own, but this is only a temporary solution. Newer deck designs include stronger bolts and washers that keep railing posts secured much more efficiently.
Another factor to consider is your deck’s age. The lifespan of the deck will depend on the climate where you live, the type of material it is made of, and the amount of use it gets. It’s best to have a professional inspection done every 5 years to check the condition of your deck, so you know when it’s nearing the end of its expected lifespan.
Once you have noticed any of the signs listed here, your next step is to find a professional and reliable Maryland decking company to design and replace your brand new deck.
North American Deck & Patio is your best resource for the job! We have over 25 years of experience in the industry and have completed over 1,000 projects in our area. Contact us today to request a free consultation for your next decking project.